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Old 09-06-2020, 03:53 PM   #61
Varyon
 
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

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Originally Posted by Polydamas View Post
No, I mean changes like "charge and break your lance, draw an estoc, drop the estoc, pull out a hammer, beat their helmet in, put it away and draw a cutting sword ..." Historically, high-status warriors, the kind who would have several skills around 12-14 in GURPS Tactical Shooting terms, carried as many sidearms as they could and swapped as needed.

To make that happen in GURPS, the price of being competent in a variety of weapons has to be competitive with the advantage of having just the right weapon. If its easier to just make your best weapon work, characters will do that. That means less harsh defaults between skills and probably fewer skills.
One issue that a condensed skill list (particularly one with generous defaults, as you note) resolves is that it allows one to make, say, a master swordsman who used to be a highly-skilled soldier without either making an unrealistic character (by focusing almost entirely on skill with a sidearm) or having to pay a good amount (or change the character concept to being a DX-monkey) for what in the campaign would largely be background skills (by having a respectable skill level in the various weapons he'd be expected to be familiar with).
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Old 09-06-2020, 04:23 PM   #62
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

Just one example: Axe/Mace defaults to Flail-5 or DX-5. However skilled you are at Broadsword or Shortsword, pick up an axe and you are relying on raw DX in GURPS.

In the real world, there is very little evidence for any special training program for axes, hammers, and maces in western Eurasia, even amongst the kind of people who were expected to know how to use one. Most warriors seem to have taken the view that if you could use a sword, you could figure out an axe, hammer, or mace. So I would have the different one-handed Melee Weapon skills default to each other at no worse than -4. The duellist focuses on a single skill, while the combat soldier buys several (giving defaults in most weapon skills) and probably buys a few others up from default.
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Old 09-06-2020, 06:04 PM   #63
martinl
 
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Default Re: Reducing the number of wepon skills

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Originally Posted by Kromm View Post
I'd add strict, perk-governed familiarity with specific weapons – not merely types. Without the perk, you'd fight at -2 to skill. So you'd see people with Melee Weapons (DX/VH) and a couple of perks like "Weapon Familiarity (Long Axe)" and "Weapon Familiarity (Small Knife)," or with Melee Weapons (One-Handed Swords) (DX/H) and a couple of perks like "Weapon Familiarity (Rapier)" and "Weapon Familiarity (Large Knife)."
I'd make the perk a +2 bonus rather than lack of the perk being a penalty, for two reasons. The first that bonuses make folks happy, the second is that it gives someone with DX 10 who's spent 1 pt in a combat skill (specialized) and 1 pt in the perk to have a 10 rather than an 8.

Additionally, I'd make "combat styles" include a list of weapons they gave familiarity with, and make them a package deal with a steep discount.
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Old 09-06-2020, 08:00 PM   #64
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Default Re: Reducing the number of wepon skills

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Originally Posted by martinl View Post
I'd make the perk a +2 bonus rather than lack of the perk being a penalty, for two reasons. The first that bonuses make folks happy, the second is that it gives someone with DX 10 who's spent 1 pt in a combat skill (specialized) and 1 pt in the perk to have a 10 rather than an 8.

Additionally, I'd make "combat styles" include a list of weapons they gave familiarity with, and make them a package deal with a steep discount.
The +2 does sound nice. With the right skill modifiers on weapons and taking optional specialties into account, you could get a very nice balance of things so that 'Broadsword' would be 'average' but you're still largely taking one weapon skill.
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Old 09-06-2020, 08:39 PM   #65
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

I think putting shortsword and greatsword in one skill and knife in another is placing the break in the wrong place. I'd suggest something more like Short Blade (replacing Knife and Shortsword) and Long Blade (Covering Broadsword and Two-Handed Sword).
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Old 09-07-2020, 03:59 AM   #66
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

That's a good point. Hmmm... Tinker tinker
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Old 09-07-2020, 07:27 AM   #67
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

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Originally Posted by AlexanderHowl View Post
People who were highly skilled at multiple forms of combat were historically very rare (and are likely best modeled with higher levels of DX). Even a professional fighter would only have a few combat skills at 14, several at 12, and the rest at default. Since the majority of combatants throughout history were conscripts, levies, or militias, I doubt that they had more than one combat skill at 12, a couple at 10, and the rest at default.
Or the the high end had a talent that allowed them to pull off these feats.

Look at the 4e conversion of the historical people from GURPS Who's Who 1 and GURPS Who's Who 2 (so no "But i don't have the book" BS) and AFAIR not that even the "warrior rulers" reach the 5 skill mark.

For example, King David ben-Jesse is as 4 weapon skills: Bow, Shortsword, Sling, and Staff. Sure Sling in terms of point Sling is high but per the Goliath knockdown it is supposed to be high. Alexander the Great is in much the same mood and his skill points are more in the 1-4 point range

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Originally Posted by RyanW View Post
I think putting shortsword and greatsword in one skill and knife in another is placing the break in the wrong place. I'd suggest something more like Short Blade (replacing Knife and Shortsword) and Long Blade (Covering Broadsword and Two-Handed Sword).
Shad (of Shadiversity) shows why this is a majorly bad idea.

The Swords page at GURPSwiki goes into that it is how the terms are used vs what they meant in real life. Fencing is more properly with a light sword with a maximum length of 43.3 in which by length would put it in the longsword lengthwise but trying to that type of fencing with an actual longsword would get you a serious case of dead.

As I pointed before (and people in support of this ignore) when you think about it the suggest skills are so close to Weapon Master (small to medium class) [30 to 35] that it isn't funny, And when mundane skills are better then cinematic advantages and are far cheaper something has clearly gone wrong.

Weapons Master is the three rail in all this because "You are familiar with – if not proficient in – every weapon within your class. This gives you an improved default: DX/Easy weapon skills default to DX-1, DX/Average ones to DX-2, and DX/Hard ones to DX-3." (B99):

*All muscle-powered weapons (45 points)
*A large class (such as all bladed or one-handed) of weapons. (40 points)
*A medium class (such as all swords) of weapons. (35 points)
*A small class (such as fencing weapons or knightly weapons), of weapons (30 points)
*Two weapons normally used together such as broadsword and shield or rapier and main-gauche. (25 points)
*One specific weapon. (20 points)

So we are basically being suggested three mundane skills each of shich is better then a cinematic advantage and is cheaper. How in the name of sanity does that make any degree of sense?!
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Last edited by maximara; 09-07-2020 at 08:02 AM.
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Old 09-07-2020, 07:49 AM   #68
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

Maybe the simplest solution here is Talents. And you don’t even have to invent house rules! Just create some 5-pt talents: swordsman (all sword skills), chopper (axe/mace, flail, 2h axe/mace, 2h flail, polearm, maybe also kusari/whip), knifer (knife, shortsword, maybe throw in fast-draw or thrown knife to fill this one out), etc. The names could use help but you get the idea. At 5/lvl these cost a bit more than skills to raise, but come with a reaction bonus (using Basic talents here, PU talents could allow a more nuanced approach with alternate benefits/costs).
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Old 09-07-2020, 07:52 AM   #69
naloth
 
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

I kind of like the idea of reworking weapon skills into 3 DX/VH skills, with a +2 perk for familiarity with a given weapon. I'd make them:

Melee Weapons
Shooting
Throwing

I'd also extend this to unarmed skills (DX/E):

Unarmed striking
Unarmed grappling

where the first point gives you access to maneuvers, and you have a thrust and ST bonus based on the character points invested. These would also come with the unarmed parry penalty, but that can be bought off as an average maneuver (4 points to eliminate).

Right now I'm considering an unarmed bonus of +1 ST while using that skill per 4 character points invested in the skill, doubled for TBAM to encourage skills over raw DX. The bonus should be somewhat competitive with Striking ST (striking only) or Lifting ST (grappling only).

I'd also extend this scheme to Weapon Master instead of the "per die" bonuses. This encourages actual character points in training. It also helps even out the disparity between a massive bonus on an already powerful attack vs a tiny bonus that a regular ST10 person gets on a mediocre weapon.
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Old 09-07-2020, 08:06 AM   #70
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

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Originally Posted by maximara View Post
So we are basically being suggested three mundane skills each of shich is better then a cinematic advantage and is cheaper. How in the name of sanity does that make any degree of sense?!
It is not better. You don't get the weapon damage bonus and the better rapid strikes or parries. Those are what you pay for with Weapon Master, not the skill bonus. The improved defaults are just gravy.
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